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  • EIAJ Expects 1999 Electronics Output to Rise 2 Percent
  • January 6, 1999 (TOKYO) — The Electronic Industries Association of Japan (EIAJ) said that production in 1999 of Japan’s electronics industry is forecast to increase 2 percent, to reach 24,610.5 billion yen (US$216.2 billion).
    In 1998, such production is estimated to have plunged 7.2 percent, to 24,121.1 billion yen (US$211.9 billion), registering negative growth for the first time in five years.

    The EIAJ predicted that the slowdown in economic growth in the U.S. and European markets would be negative factors in 1999. Also, it forecast that the Japanese and Asian economies will bottom out, thanks in part to the effects of the Japanese government’s large-scale economic stimulus package and other countermeasures.

    In the 1998 estimates, growth tumbled in all of the three segments — consumer electronic equipment, industrial electronic equipment, and electronic components and devices.

    Production of consumer electronic equipment is seen slipping 6.4 percent, to 2,094.9 billion yen (US$18.4 billion) in 1998. Exports to the United States and European countries remained strong, but poor domestic demand due to sluggish consumer spending caused the decline.

    On the other hand, demand for digital consumer equipment, such as digital camcorders and Mini Disc players, as well as car navigation systems continued to grow, the EIAJ noted.

    This segment is forecast to increase by 0.6 percent, to 2,107.2 billion yen (US$18.5 billion) in 1999, as the steady growth of new products is expected to continue. DVD devices are now excluded from the production forecasts because MITI’s production survey (the data source) does not include them. They will be included from 1999.

    Production of industrial electronic equipment is estimated to have dropped 5.6 percent, to 12,516.9 billion yen (US$110 billion) in 1998. The negative performance is due to sluggish domestic demand and exports to Asian countries as well as stagnant exports to the United States.

    A recovery is predicted for 1999. Production of industrial electronic equipment is projected to grow 1.4 percent in this segment, to 12,691.5 billion yen (US$111.5 billion). A recovery in information-related products such as personal computers and a steady growth in mobile communications devices such as cellular telephones will support this growth, the EIAJ said.

    Production of electronic components and devices dropped 6.8 percent, to 9,509.3 billion yen (US$83.5 billion) in 1998. The EIAJ attributed the decline to sluggish demand from the equipment segment due to the downturn in the domestic economy, a steep decline in prices and stagnant exports to the segment’s leading markets, such as Asian countries and the United States.

    In 1999, production of this segment is expected to maintain a solid growth rate, increasing 3.2 percent to 9,811.8 billion yen (US$86.1 billion). This forecast is premised on a rise in demand for electronic components following a recovery in the equipment segment, and steady production growth of electronic devices to be supported by recoveries in the sales of microchips and liquid crystal displays (LCDs), the EIAJ said.

    More information in English is available at: http://www.eiaj.or.jp/english/press/pre25/index.htm

    (Nikkei Electronics)



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